20 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight: Science-Based Methods

20 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight: Science-Based Methods

20 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight

Staying motivated to lose weight is the most important step on your journey.

Staying motivated and not giving up is a difficult but necessary weight reduction skill to learn. 

To stay motivated, it is advised you get an activity tracker. It will motivate you to exercise more by displaying the number of calories burned and steps taken during the day. It will drive you to accomplish more each time, which will assist you to lose weight and lower hunger and cravings.

Besides that, here are 20 science-backed ways to stay motivated on your weight loss journey.

20 ways to stay motivated

  1. Set the right goal
    • When it comes to reducing weight, many individuals establish a goal of dropping a certain number of pounds in a specific time. Your goal should not just be losing weight but to be happy as well. It is far more motivating to be able to do something that brings you joy again, such as:
      • Wearing your favorite jeans or walking in high heels again
      • Being able to play football
      • Going out for a full day without experiencing discomfort
    • These goals relieve the pressure of losing weight by providing a cause to eat healthier, exercise more, and be happier.
    • If your objective will not make you happy, fighting for it will be much more difficult. Studies state that happy people have a better grasp on their lives and are healthier.
    • Thus, your objectives should include both enhancing your happiness and eating better. Writing down five things you want to be able to achieve in a year or two might help you come up with the proper goal. Then, design a strategy to attain these objectives. It allows you to look at the overall picture rather than just a few aspects.
    • Ensure that you set realistic goals. Dropping several pounds within a few days is unrealistic and can make you adopt an unhealthy lifestyle. Losing one to two pounds a week sounds more doable and healthier.
  2. Commit yourself
    • Researchers discovered that people who make a public commitment are more likely to succeed. The more people who know you desire to reduce weight, the harder you will work.
    • Another option is to pay for a six-month gym membership or enroll in other healthy activities that will keep you on your toes.
  3. Do not focus only on the scale
    • The scale is only one method for tracking progress. You may have weighed yourself two weeks ago and dropped five pounds, but this week, you may gain two or more pounds.
    • This will happen due to a gain in muscle mass despite the loss of fat mass. It indicates you are losing fat and gaining muscle and gaining muscle means toning up.
    • Weight fluctuations may be seen due to water retention because of a high salt diet or during certain phases of the menstrual cycle in women.
  4. Make a diet plan according to your lifestyle
    • While there are hundreds of various diets, most are calorie-restricted. A low-calorie diet will always result in weight reduction, and you gain back that lost weight when you stop dieting.
    • To begin with, avoid rigid diets that require the entire exclusion of some items. Many studies have reported that those who have an “all or nothing” mentality are less likely to lose weight. Consider adopting a food plan that is more acceptable to you, while adhering to some fundamental guidelines.
      • Reducing calorie intake
      • Limiting portion size
      • Limiting the frequency of snacking
      • Cutting down on sugary foods
      • Increase intake of fresh fruits and vegetables
  5. Maintain a food journal
    • Monitoring yourself is essential to maintain motivation and attain regular weight reduction. Several studies have found that those who keep track of what they eat have a greater chance of losing weight and keeping it off. However, you must be honest with yourself and note down everything you eat. It helps understand the causes of excessive hunger.
  6. Play music during your training session
    • Music will help you move and dance, taking your mind off the action and enabling happiness to take over and drive you. Studies discovered that people who exercised while listening to music were more likely to remain with it than those who did not.
  7. Find a mentor or partner
    • Look for someone who will challenge you to your limits. A mentor will instruct you on what to do and how to accomplish it. If you cannot find a mentor, look for a workout buddy who pushes you to exercise every day.
  8. Accept setbacks
    • Remember that you cannot achieve your goals in one day, and you will face difficulties at times. You may occasionally munch on a chocolate bar or any snack. Do not feel bad about it; try to be less hard on yourself. Allow your body to function gently and patiently.
  9. Reward yourself
    • When you complete a goal, you should give yourself small rewards. Set mini goals for yourself. When you achieve them, treat yourself by getting a massage, new pair of shorts or trousers, or a hot bubble bath. This will motivate you to attain greater and better results.
  10. Celebrate your success
    • Even small milestones in your weight-loss path are worth celebrating. To feel happy and cheerful, you should remind yourself of the small objectives you set for yourself and celebrate the completion of each goal. However, do not eat unhealthily to celebrate.
  11. Perform enjoyable exercises
    • You must like what you are doing to lose weight. Nothing you undertake with cheerful or optimistic thinking can ever produce unfavorable consequences. The greatest strategy to reduce excess weight is to engage in activities that you enjoy.
  12. Join a support group
    • Doing it alone is challenging, and there are several online and in-person support groups to assist you to avoid this. Seeking out like-minded people might offer you the comfort and affirmation you need to achieve your goals.
  13. Set and track smart goals
    • Vague, ambitious objectives, such as losing 20 pounds, may seem thrilling at first, but they are ultimately unmotivating because you cannot see or measure your progress. You must break down your big-picture objective into specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound (SMART) goals based on lifestyle adjustments.
    • When you have achieved your goal, take it a step farther or add a new one that will eventually process to your main goal.
  14. Indulge in a self-care routine
    • The two major demotivators of weight loss are lack of sleep and stress. When you are sleep deprived and burdened by life, it is tough to maintain motivation and physiologically more difficult to lose weight. These lead to hormonal imbalances that increase appetite and cravings.
    • Make some time for a self-care routine to wind down in the day, ideally an hour or two before a regular bedtime. This guarantees you receive seven to eight hours of sleep. Try reading, mild stretching, or soaking in a hot bath.
  15. Seek professional help
    • If you are feeling uninspired, talk to a doctor, certified nutritionist, or therapist. Working with a professional can help you understand what is preventing you from losing weight, from mental blocks to physical health issues. They will help you develop a tailored strategy, assisting as you proceed and holding you accountable.
  16. Understand your strengths and weakness
    • A weight loss journey necessitates self-honesty. To get there, you must first understand where you are starting.
      • Understand your desires. You may need to avoid specific meals or restaurants for the first few months if they are too tempting to resist.
      • Recognize your strengths. Your strengths will propel you forward in your weight reduction quest, allowing you to be your support system.
  17. Believe in yourself
    • Believe in your ability to attain your objectives even if it takes longer than expected. Challenges and bumps in the road are part of the process, so do not view missing a day on your diet or exercise as a failure.
    • Consider your weight reduction as a way of appreciating and caring for your body and yourself. If you have had a bad day or skipped a workout, forgive yourself and keep going.
  18. Take pics during your weight loss journey
    • Taking pics is the greatest method to track progress. Take a photo of yourself in the same pose, wearing the same clothes, and in the same light every other week. This will provide you with a clear view to spot any slight alterations because your form may vary while the scales remain constant.
  19. Do not compare yourself to others
    • You may feel others are more successful, intelligent, and in better form than you. However, it makes no difference. Weight reduction motivation is based on what is best for you.
    • When you imagine your ambitions and the ideal version of yourself, it is easy to lose sight of everyone else.
  20. Try to ignore what other people say about you
    • It may always come to your mind that someone looking at you. You may feel that they think you are overweight, and you should start losing weight. This could be demoralizing and discouraging.
    • They do not know that you have already shed 10 pounds and gone to the gym. They may have no idea how far you have already come. So, their thoughts are irrelevant to you, and you know how far you have come and are willing to go.


Weight loss occurs in the belly before anywhere else.
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Medically Reviewed on 7/15/2022


Image Source: iStock image

Mayo Clinic. Fitness: Tips for staying motivated. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/fitness/art-20047624

Haynes E. 5 Weight Loss Motivation Strategies: How to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight. Farr Institute. https://www.farrinstitute.org/weight-loss-motivation/

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